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Caramel Pecan Treasures recipe

This cookie won Elaine Rysner First Placein Chicago Tribune’s Holiday Cookie Contest in 1991.

Recipe: Caramel Pecan Treasures

1 cup butter, softened3/4 cup lightly packed light brown sugar1 teaspoon vanilla extract1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour1/2 teaspoon baking powder1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolatechips (2 cups)1 tablespoon vegetable shortening25 to 30 soft caramels, cut in half androlled into ballsFinely chopped pecans (see Cook’s Note)

  • Heat oven to 325°F (160°C).
  • Cream butter, sugar and vanilla in largemixer bowl until well mixed. Stir in flour and baking powder.(If kitchen is warm, refrigerate dough for a few minutes; doughshould be firm enough to roll easily.)
  • Shape scant teaspoonfuls of dough intoballs about the size of a marble. Place on ungreased baking sheetabout 2-inches apart. Flatten slightly.
  • Bake cookies until golden, about 15 minutes.Transfer to wire racks to cool.
  • Melt chocolate chips with shortening intop of double boiler set over simmering water. Remove from heat.
  • Flatten caramel halves so they are thesame diameter as the cookie. Place one caramel half on top ofeach cookie. (If necessary, use a dab of chocolate as “glue”to help caramel adhere to cookie.)
  • Using a small metal spatula, spread meltedchocolate thinly over top and sides of caramel and cookie tocover. Press chopped pecans onto tops of cookies. Let stand ona wire rack until chocolate firms (refrigerate if desired), about20 minutes. Place each cookie in paper bon-bon cups or similarwrappers. Store in a cookie tin with a piece of wax paper betweeneach layer.

    Makes about 60 cookies.

    Cook’s Note: We suggest toasting the pecansbefore chopping for better flavor.

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